First Impressions: How to Make Your Commercial Lobby Stand Out

January 18, 2021 | By: Molly Looman

Other than the parking lot, the lobby is one of the few areas that almost every visitor to your property will see. There has been a recent revolution in lobby design. Commercial real estate professionals are beginning to bring the lobby from just a welcome area to an activated space in their property.

No matter the size of building, there are a few ways to make a lobby give a great first impression and be an asset to tenants rather than just an architectural requirement.

Get Green

Some lobbies are not built for gathering or large areas of seating, but there are still ways to make a lobby of any size feel relaxing and alive. One of the easiest ones is indoor landscaping. Many properties are beginning to fill their lobby with plants, indoor farming, and even smaller trees. Bringing the outdoors in can make a place feel more open, more aesthetically appealing, and provide positive environmental effects for your building.

The “living wall” trend has shown that plants can be decorative and functional in a large space such as a lobby. Plants and greenery are a great strategy both for organizations starting a property fr3om scratch or those with existing buildings looking to make a change. Having small areas of indoor farming in your lobby such as an herb garden or hydroponic tower is also a great way to involve your tenants and visitors with the operations of the property, provide them with a bonus amenity and reflect the priorities of your management team.

Space to Work

As the commercial real estate industry tries to discover the office of the future, one thing we know we need now is space. Many customers are leaving behind cubicles or even individual offices and opting for open space or even just options around the property for work. Lobbies are great areas to incorporate work stations and charging zones if you have space.

Some buildings have conference tables, individual work pods, or even just a few standing counters in their lobbies as a way to provide the tenants with options to spread out and be productive. Lobbies are a blank slate that can be used to fill a direct need of a customer.

Plug into the Community

Everyone that comes into your building may not be a tenant. There may be visitors, guests, or even tourists. No matter how much foot traffic you are getting through your lobby, it Is a great place to put something on display. This is an opportunity to connect with the community surrounding your property and support a local person or business.

Maybe the team can work with local artists to host new art every month. Perhaps they can work with local makers and host a small farmer’s market. Maybe your lobby can project silent movies made by the local college film class. No matter the option, lobby space is a great way to give a local organization or person exposure to a new group of people. This strategy puts a face to your property and educates local citizens on how this building can be a part of their community and their lives.